I'm sure others have asked about this, but I need help. Here's the story: My fiancé and I have been together for 3 years now. We have one child together and another that I claim. I've been a Firefighter for a total of 8 years now. Full time for going on 4. She knew this when we got together and was fine with it. Now, since our daughter had been born, she is a TON less supportive, even to the point where she says horrible things about the Department, and also the people in my company. Anytime there's a training class that I want to attend, a shift that I fill, our any event that I need to be at, she complains, makes me feel like a horrible man, and even throws the kids up in my face saying I pUT the job before them. Telling them Daddy doesn't wanna be with them. The guys at work and the Fire Chief think I'm not dedicated enough because she guilts me into staying home when I SHOULD be at the Firehouse helping out or training. Idk what to do. Any advice? Please? I miss being a dedicated member of my Department, and I love the job with all my heart. Thanks guys

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I suspect you need to step back, take a look at HER side of the issue. Being held back from the things she loves to do or loved to do before becoming a mother of two, might be part of the reason. I suspect too, that since you chose to work TWO department jobs.. your full time job, and your volly job.. that in itself might appear to her as you DO in fact put the job(s) before her and the kid(s). I am just not seeing anything here that could be used to defend you bud. Of course.. it is only my observation based on what you said and what your profile indicates. ALSO, while you were pretty quick to say " I miss being a dedicated member of my department..(which one) and I LOVE THE JOB WITH ALL MY HEART....but what about your lady and children..where do they figure into the equation?The tough question..and one that you really need to answer honestly for YOU.. is what do you love more? sad but true! My advice? well since you asked.. and in my mind it's clear.. you dump the volly dept. You support the family on your career dept. and the end of each and every shift...(and this is important)  YOU GO HOME TO YOUR FAMILY!. SAFE!  Seems cut and dried to me..but that is just me. I can see the passion you have.. reminds me of me..but when the chips are down..there are indeed NOW more important things than being a dedicated member.. dedicated father / partner is priority now.  Does this make any sense? I wish I could have make it all nice and fuzzy - feel good..but sorry bro..this is reality. you are not the first..nor the last to be in the situation.

Good luck..  keep us posted if you wouldn't mind. This thread can be a learner for many!

Sounds like something you both should be talking to a counselor about, air the grievances, get on the same page. I also agree with much of what Brian is saying and especially if you are a two hatter.....dump the volly dept, take a leave of absence, or whatever. One pays the bills and supports the family and your immediate family comes first. Trying to juggle two FDs and a family can be tough, if there are issues with the family, look at the priorities.....and for the most part, the volly dept isn't one of them.

 

The guys at work and the Fire Chief think I'm not dedicated enough because she guilts me into staying home when I SHOULD be at the Firehouse helping out or training

 

I know many FFs who would take training or classes and OT often, but since having kids, getting married, etc, the priorities change. That is just the nature of how things work, the family is and should be a priority, the job would be next, and the "hobby" dept can be walked away from. Besides why "should" you be at the firehouse if you are not on duty? If this is a career job, there is no reason you "should" be there unless you are scheduled to be there or are being paid OT to be there.

 

I miss being a dedicated member of my Department, and I love the job with all my heart.

 

Just something to consider, you didn't mention a thing about loving your family......maybe you are putting the job first.

 

I do love my family. I have stepped back. I am no longer on the volunteer Department, and I don't go to training, save for ones in house. I spend my 24 hrs, and don't do anything else. No overtime, no contact with any department members on my off days, nothing. It's still not enough. The worst part of it is, she has, today and yesterday, told me I needed a, new job because the Fire Department takes too much time. She doesn't understand it. So Idk. Maybe you're right

Jeff.. John is absolutely correct. Go and get some professional help with this. There is far too much stuff to deal with and it can't (and should not) be dealt with here. It is private stuff between you and your soon to be wife....maybe... and as a word of caution...maybe she does not want or need to see you sharing the personal stuff. My take on it is this.. something has perhaps scared her, or has her worried.. or she feels even if you are at home, and perhaps miserable and pouting because of your recent changes in lifestyle.. firefighting to some people like me.. is considered a lifestyle..where we eat sleep and breathe ( well except me lol ) fire department, and when suddenly it's not there.. that is not a good thing.. but.. she has a side to this too. I don't know her side of the situation..but obviously there is one.. so again it goes straight back to John's advice.. talk to someone. both of you. If you truly do love your family more than your job.. you will have to work at it harder than you do at work and maybe more...

Thanks guys, I'm definitely open to ANYTHING at this point just for a little peace

She's telling you to quit your career job?

 

Yes, as of late she has. Says I can't have both

Both what?

 

The Fire Service and family. It's one or the other, she says. Get a 9 to 5

Really? Go out and get another job, just like that?

It seems you've made a mistake in making her your fiancee. I wouldn't make another mistake by taking the next step with her.

Thanks for the insight. Appreciate it. Only thing that sucks is our daughter is getting screwed

Our Chief has the same policy. What we do is important, but put your family obligations first, he tells us.

When I joined the fire department I was very proud to be a firefighter. I didn't know when or what I would be doing for real employment after college (I'm a volunteer ff), but I knew I was always going to be a firefighter. I was single at the time, and fine with that. A guy at work asked me if I were dating the right guy and he wanted me to quit the department would I leave, and I told him flat out no. I said if a guy asked me to quit what I love doing then he obviously wasn't the right guy. I still feel that way today, and my boyfriend now (who I met in the fire department) understands that (it helps that he loves the job, too).

But we are young and do not have a family together. Nor is he supporting me financially, or I him.  I agree with the guys, you need to talk this out with her and have a mediator. Someone who can call timeout and remind both of you where the other one is coming from. Maybe the new baby, besides demanding more of her time and attention, is making her more aware of the hazards of your job. But demanding you quit the department (either one of them) cold turkey is the wrong way of going about it. See what you two can work out; is it time, money, or your life she's worried about? I hesitate to say quit your volunteer department, but see about taking a trial leave of absence or taking on a smaller role, one that allows you more time at home, first. The guys in your department have families and other jobs, too, and should understand your dilemma.

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